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US Trade Deficit Surges to Record High $89.7 billion in January

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The US trade deficit worsened to a record high in January amid an increase in imports, signaling that trade could be slow down economic growth in Q1.

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

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The trade deficit expanded 9.4% to a record-high of $89.7 billion in January. December’s figures were revised to report an $82.0 billion shortfall rather than the $80.7 billion initially reported.

Trade has dragged gross domestic product growth for six consecutive quarters. Economists from Reuters had forecasted an $87.1 billion deficit.

On an inflation-adjusted basis, the January merchandise-trade deficit expanded to $118.1 billion from $111.7 billion in December.

Imports of industrial products, including oil and petroleum products, expanded in January. Crude oil prices posted the biggest January surge in three decades.

Meanwhile, goods imports continued to expand as businesses pushed to replenish inventories depleted by strong demand from consumers.

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